VIENNA, Austria (AP) — The U.S. beat France 16-12 to win the gold medal at the 3-on-3 women’s World Cup on Sunday, while Serbia prevented an American sweep by rallying to beat the U.S. 21-19 in the men’s title game.
It was the third World Cup title for the American women — and their first since 2014.
Cierra Burdick, who was on the World Cup team that won gold for the U.S. in 2014, scored seven points for the Americans in the final. LSU guard Hailey Van Lith also scored seven in the title game for the U.S., which placed only seventh at the World Cup last year.
“Unbelievable,” Burdick said. “Unbelievable. Last year I was super disappointed with our performance in the World Cup. I don’t even want to talk about last year. I’m just so happy to be here, to bounce back like this, with this staff, with this team.”
The U.S. women lost their first game of the tournament to Canada, then won seven straight to capture the gold. Their run started with pool-play wins over Hungary, Mongolia and Czech Republic, followed by a play-in game victory over Japan, a quarterfinal victory against Austria and finally a victory over China in the semifinals.
“This team has come such a long way,” Van Lith said.
Linnae Harper and Cameron Brink joined Burdick and Van Lith on the U.S. roster; 3-on-3 teams have only four players.
“It’s just insane,” Brink said. “This is my first time doing this, so I’m just immensely thankful that 3-on-3, USA Basketball is giving me a chance to do this. First time, can’t do any better.”
In the men’s final, the U.S. had a 19-15 lead before Serbia — which has won gold in six of the eight World Cups — scored the final six points.
Jimmer Fredette, Canyon Barry, Kareem Maddox and Dylan Travis were on the U.S. men’s roster. It was the third World Cup medal for the U.S., which won gold in 2019 and silver in 2016. Serbia finished the tournament with a 7-0 record; the U.S. men went 6-1.
“The experience was amazing,” Fredette said. “We’ve had a great tournament. We were right where we wanted to be.”
The U.S. men didn’t qualify for the Tokyo Olympics in 3-on-3, and Fredette said the silver-medal finish at the World Cup was another step forward toward Paris in 2024.
“We’re only going to get better,” Fredette said.